Wow! The past week has really flown by me and as usual, I haven't really accomplished very much during that time span. Nothing noteworty, perhaps. Well, except for one thing that is - my printer is working again!
Remember last week I wrote about how upset I was that the printer I purchased late last summer had bit the dust on me back in January, had come back to life for about two days in February and then, died after that reprieval. So the end of March, I bit the bullet and bought a new printer -almost exactly like the one that had died way too young! (The first one had WiFi capability but the new one did not.)
Anyway, after a mere 18 days of usage, the new printer started doing the very same thing as the other now defunct unit had done -making the paper crease as it tried to feed and then, the paper would be useless and jam up the printer.
Yes, I was upset -very upset as a matter of fact! I was even more upset then with Walmart when I tried to take the printer back and didn't have a receipt for purchase to show them! However, I had purchased the printer online and paid for it with my paypal account so, I did have a receipt but because the printer wasn't working, I couldn't print the damned receipt out and Walmart would not allow me to use their system to access and print the receipt either! (That ticked me off a good bit too, ya know!)
But anyway, after all that mess, I finally took the bull by the horns and made a phone call to Hewlett-Packard -the manufacturer of this item that appeared to me to be really faulty. (Later last week, my blogger buddy, Suldog, had suggested I write a nice, long letter to someone high up in the chain of command at Hewlett-Packard, (he even thought I could be really polite to whoever I contacted too -imagine that!) but since I'd already made the phone call, I didn't do that.)
I explained to the guy at Tech Support my plight with the printers and how I had tried every trick known and published in their online help site about unjamming printers and all to no avail.
Mr. Tech Support then asked me if I had opened up the trap door thing-a-ma-jig in the bottom of the printer. "Opened what?" I asked. There had been no mention on any of the help sites about opening any kind of trap door on the base of the printer.
So he explained to me where it was located and instructed me to turn the printer upside down and I would see it in the middle of the base of the printer. So, I did that and yes, I saw then what he was referring to there.
I opened it and as I did, he asked if there was anything in there that might be causing the printer to jam up -anything that obviously didn't belong there. Here's a picture of that little trap door open -and my finger tip there holding the lid up so you can see inside the little cave there!
To my shock -and I have no picture of this to show you -there was something rather strange in there and I knew immediately that little cave in the bottom of the printer was not meant to be a storage space for a mechanical lead pencil!
Yeah, that is what was apparently the culprit to my printer's failing on me!
And I figured immediately too where that pencil had come from -the fingers of a certain 8-year-old girl who resides in this house! (I ruled Kurtis out because he hasn't yet figured out how to deal with mechanical lead pencils!)
So I apologized for my error but also told him it might not be a bad idea if HP posted a picture and instructions on their help site for dummies like me to use to get to areas in the printer in order to unjam the things!
He offered to stay on the line with me while I reconnected the printer to make sure this was really the culprit and to be assured the printer would operate but I told him no, that it would take me a considerable amount of time to get the machine reconnected. I would have to move the computer tower, then move a smallish file cabinet out of the way to get to the electrical outlet and my surge protector thing and that also meant I would have to get down on my hands and knees, crawl under my desk to get to that stuff and it might take me even longer once I got it all connected up to be able to get back up on my feet again. I told him that I appreciated his help very much and if this didn't work, he'd know because I'd be calling him back then.
Well, I'm very pleased to say that this all worked and the printer is functioning now just fine and dandy.
After getting all that done, and since I still had the first printer that had acted up in the same way as this one sitting on a cabinet in the dining room, I thought heck, since I knew now how to go on a search and destroy mission in the belly of the beast now, I may as well check out the first printer to see if there was something floating in the depths there too that was jamming things up.
Daughter Mandy had heard all the conversation with Mr. Tech Services so she knew then what needed to be done to check out the first printer and with her looking over my shoulder, I opened it up.
We both let out a little bit of a gasp as we looked inside that puppy -and again -no photos here of what we found there -but none really needed when I tell you what we saw.
A cigarette butt!
Yes, that's right! A cigarette butt that when I reached in to pick it out, my arm balancing that printer shifted slightly causing said cigarette butt to roll -and roll it did, down deeper into the damned machine to where it is no longer visible or accessible to reach in and pick it out!
I have since decided I'm going to measure out a nice piece of cloth and hem it -and make a nifty little cover to lay over my printer to protect it from falling objects that have no business in the pocket area where the paper feeds into the printer!
That and remove mechanical lead pencils from Maya's collection of stuff and gives me a little more incentive then in my quest (that isn't going all that great at the moment) to stop smoking too!
One battle at a time, ya know.
But this was one time I did have to eat crow and take back water, ya know but since the printer is now working just fine, I don't have a problem doing that!
I did however learn something about Walmart though and I'll pass this information on to you -save all boxes, all packing materials and definitely keep ALL receipts too for any purchases that are under any kind of warrenty. Save those things forever I guess. Although considering I also discovered that at least in the case of my printer, their coverage, their warranty on that product had expired after a mere 15 days time!
So while I am willing to eat crow with respect to Hewlett-Packard, I'm still more than a little miffed with all the hassles involved with Walmart and their exchange policies, just based on the principle of things, ya know.